Students interested in pursuing careers and training in the natural gas and crude oil industry have until March 1 to submit their scholarship applications to the Ohio Oil and Gas Energy Education Program’s (OOGEEP) Scholarship Foundation.

Up to 50 qualifying students will receive a $1,000 renewable scholarship to attend an accredited Ohio college, university, technical or trade school of their choice. To date, more than 350 scholarships have been awarded to students.

"Ohio’s natural gas and crude oil industry is helping to fuel our nation’s renewed energy independence," said OOGEEP Executive Director Rhonda Reda. "OOGEEP’s scholarship winners will have an opportunity to become significant contributors to a local industry that will soon become among the world’s largest energy producers. We encourage all eligible students to apply for our scholarship program."

"The scholarship committee is honored to donate our time and industry expertise to this scholarship process," said OOGEEP Scholarship Committee Chair and GonzOil Secretary Treasurer Frank Gonzalez. "We continue to be encouraged by the drive, intelligence and commitment our scholarship winners have demonstrated as they chart their future career goals within our industry."

"I want to be part of the generation that sees the United States become energy independent," said Brian Hofmeier, a petroleum engineering major at Marietta College and 2017 scholarship winner. "I also want to work with current members of the energy sector to make sure energy remains affordable and accessible for not only the United States, but around the world."

"I had a chance to job shadow, went to a number of producing wells, and was able to speak to the pumpers as they showed me the process," said Damon Burghy, an engineering and natural resources major at Belmont College and repeat scholarship winner. "As soon as I left, I knew that I was going to change my career."

Interested students must submit a 250-500 word essay describing their personal and career goals. In the essay, students should also detail their academic achievements, extracurricular activities, awards and recognitions, community service, work history, financial needs, and personal or family influences. In addition, two letters of recommendation from a teacher, employer or other mentor figure are required.

"I want to use my degree to work toward understanding and taking care of our Earth while extracting resources from it," said Rebecca Anderson, an earth and geological science major at The Ohio State University and a 2017 repeat scholarship winner. "I am very thankful to be studying what I love, and I am excited to one day contribute to the oil and gas energy field."

The scholarship application is available at http://oogeep.org/teacher-students/scholarships/.

Qualifying students must have a career goal in the natural gas and crude oil industry, or a related energy field. They must be a U.S. citizen and an Ohio resident or a student attending, or planning to attend, an accredited Ohio college, university, technical or trade school. Students must also have and maintain a GPA of 2.5 or higher.

In 2017, OOGEEP funded 50 new and renewal scholarships to students attending 23 different Ohio institutions, representing 21 different majors. OOGEEP’s scholarships are funded through their 501(c)(3) Foundation. Those interested in supporting these scholarship efforts are encouraged to contact OOGEEP to learn how to make a tax-deductible donation.

In addition to the scholarship program, OOGEEP works with more than 70 Ohio colleges, universities, and career and technical schools that offer training for the 80 plus careers serving the natural gas and crude oil industry.

The Ohio Oil and Gas Energy Education Program (OOGEEP) is a non-profit statewide education and public outreach program. Created in 1998, OOGEEP provides a variety of programs throughout the State of Ohio. These programs primarily focus on teacher workshops, scholarships, science fair, firefighter training, industry training, career and workforce development, research and guest speaker programs.